Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Too unimportant for God?

At my last Bible study meeting, there was a discussion about feeling like some things are too unimportant to bother God with. Some people wonder why they should even bother God about their to do list or routine activities. Why would God care about cleaning the house or grocery shopping? Surely he has better things to do than to help me remember to pick everything up that is needed for dinner tonight. House chores are too mundane to warrant God's interest or power.

I definitely feel that way at times. Why bother God with cleaning the bathrooms? Perhaps it could change my sense of dread to one of encouraging connection with God, but it seems silly that God would want to join me as I clean the sinks. Could all of the humdrum housework that I loathe at times actually obtain some flecks of pleasantness if I invited God to help change my attitude? I don't know. Am I afraid that he won't show up so why bother asking?

And if these things are too small for God, then at what point is something large or important enough for God to make an appearance? A fussy child? A work review? A fight with a friend? A shortage of finances to pay the bills? What is the tipping point from the obscure to important?

And, if things can be too small for God, can they also be too big? Is cancer something that God just can't handle? Might I send up a small prayer about my ill friend but then not expect God to do something?

We definitely tend to live this way at times. It's certainly human nature to try and handle things on our own, especially those "small" things. But why do we really do it? Do we want to feel like we have a sense of control? Is that why big things like illness, where we can't possibly do anything to help, are when we usually seek God? We think that if we ought to be able to handle it, then we should? Or do we not trust God enough? Are we afraid that we'll offer up our small need and he'll bat it away as unimportant to him? Are we worried that he won't come through when we need him to? Do we have such small faith that we don't know that we can really trust him with any are of our lives? And what about when we do pray about a sick family member and, instead of a miraculous healing, they die? Does that mean that God didn't hear us? That he didn't care? Or perhaps that's when we are supposed to trust that God's ways are higher than ours and his understanding is greater than ours? Are we to trust that God truly does desire good things for us and has a hope and a future for us (that may be different from the one we've imagined)?

We sometimes think that God should be reliable like a math equation. If we pray this way (A), then this (B) will happen. We don't like having to trust that whatever is best will happen, especially if it's not what we want. Who says that getting that promotion will be better for my family than not? Who says that the added salary and accompanying responsibilities won't take away from spending time with them and investing in my children? Who says that temporary hardships won't lead to lasting joy?

What about you: Are there things in your life that are too small or too big for God?

No comments:

Post a Comment